House prices rising but slowdown may follow

HOUSE prices have risen by 6.6 per cent in the past year, according to the Halifax house price survey.
The jump represented the fastest annual rate of increase since October 2007.

However, the mortgage lender said that the trend in recent months has been for price rises to stutter.

Prices fell slightly in April by 0.1 per cent, taking the cost of the average UK home to £168,202. The Halifax predicted that prices would be flat over the course of 2010.

Martin Ellis, economist at the Halifax, said: “The underlying rate of house price growth has slowed in recent months following the relatively sharp rebound in the second half of 2009. New sales instructions have risen, helping to push up the stock of unsold properties.

“The imbalance between supply and demand is easing.”